Detectives and Crime Analysts have identified a slight rise in the year to date number of thefts, burglaries, and auto thefts compared to this time last year. In reviewing the cases this year, detectives have identified some trends in what thieves are targeting when committing these types of crimes.
The majority of the thefts occurring appear to be crimes of opportunity.
“Valuable items such as IPods, tablets, GPS’s and other electronics are being left on the seats of cars which are oftentimes locked. These items are easily recognizable and criminals are taking advantage of the easy pickings,” commented Lieutenant Kennedy who oversees the Palmdale Station’s Detective Bureau. “These crimes are not fully planned, but bad guys just take a quick look into the vehicles to see what can be taken.”
Palmdale Station is encouraging the community to become active in combating crime in their community by participating in the Crime Prevention Programs it offers. Details on these programs can be obtained from the City of Palmdale’s Public Safety Office at 661-267-5170. Community members can also assist in preventing crime by following the tips below:
- Call the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station, (661) 272-2400, at the first sign of anyone casing vehicles or homes. Casing = looking into vehicles or homes or loitering around them with no apparent lawful purpose.
- Report persons sitting in parked vehicles with no apparent purpose.
- Call 9-1-1 if you see anyone tampering with automobiles.
- Call 9-1-1 immediately if you see someone climbing over a fence into a back or side yard or breaking into a residence.
- If you see suspicious activity, be a good witness. Try to get a vehicle license plate number. If you can’t get the vehicle license plate number try to get as much identifying information about the vehicle or person as you can. For vehicles get, color, make, model, damage, type of rims, stickers, etc. For suspicious people get clothing, scars, tattoos, oddities, etc.
- Take a cell phone picture or video of the person or vehicle if you can safely do so. Save/store the information in your phone.
- Write down license plates of unfamiliar vehicles in your neighborhood in case something comes for them at a later date. The information may solve a case should a crime be occurring.
The Sheriff’s Department is working hard to end these thefts by deploying additional personnel in the area, and using extra deputies and Volunteers on Patrol to help monitor parking lots, according to Lieutenant Larry Gregg, of the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Bureau.
“While these extra efforts will help, we really need the assistance of the public by ensuring their vehicles are locked and valuables are stored in a secure area (trunk) if they wish to leave them in the car” Gregg said.
Lieutenant Gregg went on to say that the nearly five year decrease in crime in the area can be directly attributed to the partnerships built between the Sheriff’s Department, Cities and the public. Reminders such as this one will help in continuing that downward trend and help keep the community safe.
(Information via press release from the Palmdale Station.)